SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ - This past weekend saw over 600 students, staff, and chaperones venture to Hershey, Pennsylvania where the Middle School music department brought their award-winning performance to the land of chocolate.

The children performed their materials on Friday evening and were judged by professional musicians in selected fields. After a full day of relaxation in the park and a time to relieve the normal frustrations, the sponsor announced the following awards to the worthy students:

Concert Orchestra received an excellent rating and 2nd place in the middle school division.

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Symphonic Orchestra received a superior rating and 1st place in the junior high division.

The Symphonic Orchestra received the Best Overall Award for middle school/junior high orchestra.

Jazz Ensemble received a superior rating and 1st place in the middle school division.

Jazz Band received a superior rating and 1st place in the junior high division.

The Jazz Band received the Best Overall Award for middle school/junior high jazz group.

Concert Band received an excellent rating and 1st place in the middle school band II division.

Symphonic Band received a superior rating and 1st place in the middle school band I division.

Wind Ensemble received a superior rating and 1st place in the junior high division.

The Wind Ensemble received the Best Overall Award for middle school/junior high concert band.

Crossroads Singers received a superior rating and 1st place in the middle school treble choir division.

Concert Choir received a superior rating and 1st place in the middle school division.

Vocal Ensemble received a superior rating and 1st place in the junior high division.

The Vocal Ensemble received the Best Overall Award for middle school/junior choir.

Pablo Ramirez-Garcia received an outstanding choral accompanist award.

Mrs. Lisa Lepore received three superior ratings and a Best Overall Award for middle school/junior choir in her last of 21 Hershey Competitions.

Among the veteran staff who worked hard both behind the stage and on the forefront were Music Supervisor Robert Sears, Principal Bonnie Capes, Ray and Laura Keuhner for their tireless preparation from behind the scenes and the many chaperones who stayed with the children for hours at a time to provide security and guidance. Many interested parents also made the journey to cheer on their students.

The music staff instructing the students included Sergio Fossa, Linda and George Heffentrager, Lisa Lepore, Dana Marchioni, Matthew Piszko, and Donald Strusz.

For additional information regarding this trip (hopefully some pictures) and more school related music programs such as next week’s Bike Ride and School Graduation, please follow TAPinto South Brunswick.